Varanasi, Kashi or Benaras is one of the oldest cities in the world. Situated on the banks of the Holy River Ganga, the city is visited by people from across the globe. The abode of Vishwanath cradles spirituality and is nothing short of a dream destination for not just those seeking salvation but also for those who wish to take a closer look at the finer nuances of life.
A hub of tourists, Varanasi has a variety of things to offer. And if you plan a trip to the land of Kashi Vishwanath, here are ten things you must do there:
Take a dip in the Holy Ganga: A trip to Varanasi will be incomplete without taking a dip in the pristine waters of the Ganga.
Visit the Kashi Vishwanath temple and attend the aarti – One of the holiest shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, the Jyotirlinga of Vishwanath, will leave you enchanted. Also, attending the aarti will virtually take you on a tour to Kailasa, the eternal abode of the Lord. Such is the impact of the mesmerising aarti.
Attending the Ganga Aarti in the evening – How can you not witness the magical Ganga aarti when in Varanasi. The evening aarti is a visual delight and you can watch the priests paying ode to Ganga, the river from the heaven in the most soulful way.
Take a boat ride to experience the valour of the famous ghats – A boat ride early in the morning is the best way to experience the scenic beauty of the ghats. Each of the ghats has been named after legendary kings and personalities who played a pivotal role in nurturing and safeguarding the essence of Indian spirituality.
A walk down the bylanes – The beauty of Varanasi lies in its bylanes. You can walk down the bylanes to take a closer look at the way Varanasi leads life. It’s indeed an experience worth remembering.
Gorge on local delicious food and drinks – You would be committing a sin if you deny your taste buds the right to experience delicious flavours of Varanasi. This place is heavenly for those who are vegetarians and people who have a sweet-tooth. This old city has a wide variety of food preparations to offer. From unique tamatar ki chaat to safed makkhan toast, from kulhad ki chai to meethi lassi, from rasgullas to malpuas, from kachori and aloo ki sabzi to thandai – you have to try them all. And last but not the least, grab a special Benarasi paan.
Pick up a Benarasi handloom saree – Visit stores approved by the Government to pick up fine handcrafted Benarasi sarees. Benarasi sarees are insanely gorgeous. By buying a Benarasi saree, you will play a small yet significant role in saving an age-old craft and weavers from going jobless.
Turn a shopaholic – Varanasi has infinite items in store for you. You can purchase idols made of clay, baskets made of cane, copper and brass utensils, souvenirs with Ganga Jal etc.
A visit to other temples around by an e-rickshaw – Hire an e-rickshaw to visit other temples and religious spots in and around Varanasi. While travelling through the city in an e-rickshaw, you can easily get familiar with the city.
Take candid pics - The charismatic beauty of Varanasi will make a photographer out of you. Grab slices of your tour to Varanasi by locking memorable moments in your camera frame. This will help you treasure each of your glorious experiences for posterity.